Published: Sat, May 20, 2017
USA | By Kelli Rowe

Ford to cut 10pc of global workforce, report says

The company said it plans to reduce 10 per cent of its salaried costs and personnel levels in North America and Asia Pacific this year, using voluntary packages.

The news agency reports that by October 1, Ford will lay off only salaried workers offering them generous early retirement incentives.

Ford could cut 10% of its workforce across North America and Asia as part of the brand's latest cost-cutting measures, Reuters reports. Since Mr. Field became CEO in mid-2014, Ford stock has fallen nearly 40%, notes the WSJ. Mr. Fields has pushed new technology investments like a $4.5 billion electric-vehicle program and an autonomous auto project, two things eating away at Ford's profit margins in the short-term despite lucrative pickup and SUV sales.

Product Development and Ford Credit, which already are improving total operating efficiencies in other ways.

The Middle East and Africa was spared because it's a new, emerging business unit, Ford said.

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Ford has not specified the details of what it blandly calls "people efficiency actions", and has not responded to questions from industry journalists, although the company claims that any layoffs will be "voluntary", cited by Reuters.

It is unclear if those jobs will be affected by the cuts.

While still robust, Ford's profits margins in North America are starting to shrink amid a broader slowdown in the USA auto market, following a seven-year growth streak.

"Fields was extremely candid about the market challenges including slowing USA sales, pricing pressure and rising commodities", UBS said in a research note Monday.

Chief executive officer Mark Fields also wants to arrest the slide in the United States vehicle company's share price.

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Ford's board scheduled extra meeting time ahead of last week's annual meeting to press him on his plans for reversing the company's fortunes.

On Tuesday, Ford's stock fell to $10.90 per share - its lowest point in the past year - before closing at $10.94 for the day.

The relocation might put the US automaker on a clash with President Donald Trump, who has made enhancing vehicle employment a top priority.

In March, he tweeted in celebration of Ford's plans to invest $1.2 billion and create 130 jobs in the expansion, much of which had been previously planned and announced.

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